Ex Parte Motion in United States District Court–At A Glance

Use this At A Glance Guide to learn the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure that govern ex parte motions in the United States District Courts. For more detailed information, including local rules, on ex parte motions in a specific United States District Court, please see the SmartRules United States District Court Ex Parte Motion Guide for the court where your action is pending.

Ex Parte Motion Rules:

There are no provisions of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure governing ex parte papers. Customarily, ex parte papers include: (1) the ex parte application, providing a short statement of the relief sought and the grounds on which the application is based; (2) a memorandum of points and authorities supporting the application, including any evidentiary declarations; (3) a declaration regarding notice to the opposing party; and (4) a proposed order.

A motion must be made in writing, (unless made during a hearing or at trial), and must set forth with particularity the grounds on which it is brought, and the relief or order sought. FRCP 7(b)(1).

Every pleading, written motion, and other paper must be signed by at least one attorney of record in the attorney’s name – or by a party personally if the party is unrepresented. The paper must state the signer’s address, e-mail address, and telephone number. FRCP 11(a).

There are no provisions of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure that govern filing and service of ex parte papers. Customarily, ex parte papers are filed with the Court and personally served on opposing parties the same day. Many judges have special rules and procedures regarding ex parte applications.

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